【陳慧珊】有一種教育,叫學習做決定 (30)時間規劃是種思維遊戲

2017-02-08


表面上,時間規劃的基礎可能是一堆數字和邏輯;然而,時間規劃的核心卻能反映一個人(或一間公司)對達成目標的意識、準備和願意。若然沒意識到時間規劃的重要性;沒在身心靈上作好準備擔當某一角色;以及,非自願去合作或跟隨所訂的計劃,這些都會令時間規劃的目的落空。

時間規劃在很多行業中都扮演着重要的角色,譬如飛機在機場跑道上升降;汽車和其他工業的生產線,全都依賴精確、可靠的時間規劃和行動,才能「使命必達」!

然而,正如現實生活中,時間表並不一定能依着計劃而行。

以我最近看醫生的真實經驗為例,可以印證我這一講法,亦相信能引起大家的共鳴。

悠長的新年假期前,我去看醫生。當我坐在診所候診,噴嚏與咳嗽此起彼落間,突然發現自己已等了45分鐘。我在心身靈上原都已為這次行程作好準備,甚至為了赴約,我避過一次撞車;千辛萬苦找人代我接女兒放學;並且為趕赴約,我沒時間打扮,只穿汗衣、載頂棒球帽、零化粧就出門,來到最時尚的中環,並說服自己沒人會注意到我,然而一切現在都似乎付諸流水。

我意識到要有責任準時到達診所,免打亂其他病人的時間,我偏離了平日的行程,作出準備,我亦不怕打針或接受其他辛苦(對我來說)的治療。然而一小時過去,我仍與另外八位病人一齊候診。

都說時間表從不依計劃而行。

諷刺的是,我第二份在電視台的工作就是做節目排程。當年,我是波士頓公營廣播機構(PBS)的節目排程員,其中一項工作是根據製片商、製作理,或任何需要電視台自製節目拷貝人士的要求,安排紀錄片和其他節目配音(用磁帶錄音,當時仍被視為最先進的技術!)我還管理一隊工程人員,安排他們幫忙錄製這些節目。為達到客戶的要求,我需要在限期前,根據機器可使用時間,安排工程師錄製節目。

我很認真地工作,就像一個孝順女兒對家庭負起重大責任一樣。可惜三個月後,我發現這些工程人員根本沒按我努力製訂好的時間表做事,反而他們用自己的方式,較我預訂更早的時段錄好節目,而他們從不告訴我節目早已錄好。

我當時很年輕、天真,亦沒經驗,我所意識到就只是對工作和客戶負責;亦已準備好加班,用時間和精力為客戶把發揮出最高的效率,亦準備好公平地對待我的工程師,以及保持部門的良好信譽。而且,我願意按需要調整工作進度。

然而有些時候,甚至大部分時間,即使我們意識到、準備好、也願意付出,但情況並未如計劃般實現。

事後看來,當日PBS的工程師自把自為改變少少,是否真的那麼糟糕?畢竟,所有錄音都製作好,客戶最後亦高高興興。而我,若不迫自己要準時到達診所,反而遲五分鐘,又是否真的那麼大不了?

羅倫・希爾曾說過:「生命無從預計,我們能做的只有隨時候命。」

二十年前,我想我會為一份演藝事業耗盡一生;十五年前,我想我一生只愛一次;十年前,我想我打後都會保持單身,不會找到一個合適的人組織家庭。

無數的經驗,很多年後,我終於明白,生命是無法被安排好。即使我們已意識到、準備好、亦願意,我們仍須重新再來學習,以迎接未來生命的挑戰。

我也學會從容處理事情、順其自然。儘管我已準備就緒,但仍期待在人生路上,有無法預計的事情發生。

有人仍相信,要達致卓越,必須緊從不可改變的計劃,以實現心中的遠景和任務。

我卻傾向另一些人的說法,他們指,以單一計劃來試圖減低我們面對不確定性的恐懼,只會抑制我們的創造力和處理風險的智慧。保持處事有彈性和流動性,有能力去面對困境,有時甚至要重新學習更新,都能令生命更有趣和有意義。

學習做決定,成長,以及讓生命自然發生、不斷改變、以致變化不斷。唯一我們可以計劃的,是持續學習。唯一可帶領我們「關關難關,關關過」的,並非那嚴格遵循的「時間表」,而是通過不斷變得醒覺、有準備和願意,這不斷進步的循環的思考遊戲,才讓我們適應生命中不斷出現的狀況。

 

Decision Making is Education

“Scheduling the Mind-Set-Game”

On the surface, the foundation of scheduling may seem to be just a set of numbers and logistics. However, the core of scheduling reflects a person’s (or company’s) awareness of, readiness for, and willingness to accomplish set goals. Without being aware of the significance of scheduling, without being prepared physically and mentally to take up the role, and without the willingness to cooperate or follow through would defeat the purpose of scheduling.

Scheduling plays a vital role in many industries. For example, takeoffs and landings at an airport runway and other transportation systems, production lines for automobile and other manufacturing systems, all depend on precise and reliable scheduling and implementation to meet objectives.

However, just like in real life, scheduling does not always work according to plan.

One real life daily example of scheduling can be exemplified with my recent experience at the doctors, which I’m sure you can all relate to. Sitting at the doctor’s office before the long festive holiday and waiting to be called on, I suddenly noticed in between my fits of sneezing and coughing that I had already waited 45 minutes. Having avoided a near collision on the road, painstakingly found a substitute to pick up my daughter from school, and willfully convinced myself that I could still blend into the cosmo-chic of downtown Central despite being clad in sweats and baseball cap and zero makeup as I rushed out the door, all the mental and physical preparations I had made in order to meet my scheduled appointment went right down the drain.

I was aware of being responsible to arrive on time so as not to intrude on the schedule of other patients, I had made preparations which deviated from my normal plans and behaviors, plus I was willing to subject myself to injections or other (to me) harsh medical treatments, yet an hour later I was still waiting at the doctor’s office along with 8 other patients.

Scheduling does not always work according to plan.

Ironically, my second job in television was production scheduling. I was a production scheduler for a Public Broadcasting Station (PBS) in Boston, where one of my tasks was to schedule documentaries and other programs to be dubbed (i.e., tape-recorded, when tapes were still considered state of the art!) upon the request of producers, production assistants, or anyone who needed copies of a show produced by the station. I also had at my disposal a team of engineers who I could assign to make these dubs; therefore, to meet client requests, my job was to schedule a time according to machine availability for engineers to make recordings to meet deadlines.

I took my job seriously, much like a filial Chinese daughter towards familial responsibilities, but three months into my job I noticed that these engineers had not followed my scheduling efforts at all, but that they had found their own ways to complete the dubs much earlier than my scheduled slots. And they had never notified me of the early completed dubs.

I was young, naïve, and inexperienced. All I knew was that I was aware of my responsibility to my job and clients, I was prepared to work overtime and to exert time and energy into maximizing efficiency for clients, to be fair to the engineers, and to maintain goodwill for the department, plus I was willing to make adjustments along the process if necessary.

However, sometimes, or even most of the time, even if we are aware, ready, and willing, situations don’t always work according to “schedules”.

In hindsight, was it really so bad that the engineers at the PBS television station took the initiative to divert a little? After all, the tapes were dubbed and clients were happy at the end.

And would it have been fatal if I were 5 minutes late for my doctor’s appointment rather than nearly killing myself to arrive precisely on the dot?

“We can’t plan life. All we can do is be available for it.”

-Lauryn Hill

Twenty years ago I thought I would spend my entire life in one acting career, fifteen years ago I thought I would only fall in love and get married once in my life, and ten years ago I thought I would remain single again forever and never be able to find someone worth having a family with.

Hundreds of lessons and many years later, I have learned that life cannot be scheduled. And that even if we are aware, ready, and willing, that we still need to renew the process of learning all over again to meet future life challenges.

I am also learning to take things in stride, to go with the flow, to expect the unexpected while preparing myself to take on whatever comes my way.

Some people believe that in order to excel we need to establish and abide by rigid schedules towards meeting our visions and missions.

I tend to go with the people who say that attempts to diminish our fear of uncertainty with monotonous schedules may only curb creativity and intellectual risks. Remaining flexible and fluid with the strength to confront, sometimes, even a complete process of renewal (of learning) makes life much more interesting and meaningful.

Decision making, growth, and life are emergent, ever-evolving, and changing. The only thing that we can schedule is the constant of learning. The only thing that can carry us over through one hurdle to the next is not by rigidly following “schedules”, but to adapt to life situations through the mind-set game of progressive cycles of continuously being aware, prepared, and willing.

 

作者:陳慧珊

相關文章:

【陳慧珊】有一種教育,叫學習做決定 (29)新一年的快樂計劃

【陳慧珊】有一種教育,叫學習做決定 (28) 遇見聖誕老人

 

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